Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur today inaugurated five days long 9th National Winter Carnival-2020 at Manali in Kullu district and flagged off Winter Carnival Parade from Circuit House Manali after performing Puja at famous Hidimba Mata Temple at Manali. Winter Carnival is organised from 2nd January to 6th January every year. Speaking at Manu Rangshala, the Chief Minister said that the State was known for its rich tradition and cultural diversity. He said that the Winter Carnival Manali every year attracted lakhs of tourists from all over the world. He said that this festival has been gaining popularity amongst foreign tourists as well day by day. He said that Manali has been the host for the grand Himachal Winter Carnival ever since the festival was initiated. He said that popularity of this tourist destination and ease of accessibility is what makes Manali a perfect venue for the carnival.Jai Ram Thakur said that Rs. 163 crore Sewerage Scheme would provide sewerage facilities to Manali town and adjoining areas. He said that the State Government was committed to promote Manali town as the favourite tourist destination of the country as well as world. He said that efforts would be made to create adequate infrastructure in Manali town so that local and tourists could be facilitated immensely.Chief Minister said that it was heartening to know that over 153 Mahila Mandals and other NGOs of the area participated in the procession based on different important issues such as cleanliness, drug abuse, Gau Sanrakshan, women empowerment, awareness regarding female foeticide and environment conservation etc. He said that the messages were not only vital but emphatically presented by the women for which he congratulated the participants.While appreciating the spirit of the people of Kullu district for being passionate in preserving and conserving the rich cultural repository of the district, Jai Ram Thakur said that Kullu district was not only a culturally rich district, but the culture was also diverse and vibrant. He said that he was proud of the Pahari culture and tradition and was committed to promote and preserve the same.
Chief Minister said that the country was fortunate to have a strong leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi who was committed to make India one of the strongest countries of the world. He said that Prime Minister has a special love and affection and bonded with the State of Himachal Pradesh. He said that the same benevolence was showered on the State by Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who even has a home at Prini near Manali. He said that 'Atal Tunnel', which was earlier known as Rohtang Tunnel would be completed by June end this year and Prime Minister Narendra Modi would be dedicating the same to the nation. Jai Ram Thakur said that abrogation of Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir, Triple Talaq and Citizen Amendment Act, 2019 were the biggest gift of the Prime Minister to the Nation and this was possible only due to the strong leadership provided by Narendra Modi.Chief Minister announced that light and sound show would be organized at Manali. He also announced that Primary Health Centre would be opened at Bhakli (Manali). He said that Science classes would also be started at Government Senior Secondary School Bhakli.Jai Ram Thakur also announced that jeepable bridge would also be constructed at Goshal road. He announced that Rs. five crore would be spent for maintenance of left bank road. He said that auditorium would also be constructed at Manali.Various social, cultural and political associations also honoured the Chief Minister on the occasion. Chief Minister flagged off Tableau of Mahila Mandals and other NGOs.Later, the Chief Minister laid foundation stone of Civil Hospital Manali to be constructed by spending an amount of Rs. 3 crore and inaugurated 55 meter Span Bridge at Klath and of Government Senior Secondary School Building at Palchan constructed by spending Rs. 1.68 crore and Rs. 4 crore respectively.
Chief Minister also laid foundation stone of Forest Rest House Building, Chiyal Manali to be constructed with Rs. 1.58 crore, of Eco Park, Jagatsukh to be completed by spending Rs. 50 lakh and of Sewerage Scheme to adjoining area of Manali Town by spending Rs. 163 crore.Earlier, the Chief Minister flagged off Manali Winter Hill Climb, a car rally on the occasion. He also planted a sapling of Deodar near Circuit House, Manali. He also released the souvenir brought out by the organising committee and also a poster on Road Safety. He also honoured 102 year woman Thelbaru Devi of Balsari village of the area.Forest and Transport Minister Govind Thakur thanked the Chief Minister for dedicating developmental projects worth crores of rupees for Manali town. He said that Chief Minister was always considerate towards developmental demands and needs of the Kullu district which has ensured that the district forged ahead on path of progress and prosperity under his leadership. He also detailed various developmental demands of the area. Member of Parliament Ram Swaroop Sharma said that the double engine of Centre and State Government was ensuring that Himachal Pradesh was poised to emerge as Model State of the Country in matter of development. Deputy Commissioner Kullu and Chairperson of the Winter Carnival Manali Organising Committee Dr. Richa Verma welcomed the Chief Minister and other dignitaries present on the occasion. She also highlighted various events being undertaken during the Carnival.Irrigation and Public Health Minister Mahender Singh Thakur, MLA Banjar Surender Shourie, Vice Chairman HPMC Ram Singh, Chairperson BJP Mahila Morcha Dhaneshwari Thakur, District BJP President Bhimsen, BJP leader Yuvraj Bodh, SP Kullu Gaurav Singh were present on the occasion among others.